After watching all of the videos and reading the chapters I do not believe there is a difference between citizenship and digital citizenship. The only difference is that one is face to face and the other is online. They both require being kind, respectful, responsible, and doing no harm. Digital citizenship is now just as important as citizenship because everyone who is everyone has some kind of device that connects them to the technology world. We need to make sure everyone knows how to follow the necessary precautions and safety when online. We also need to make sure that everyone follows the code of ethics knowing how to treat people and how to show professionalism when online.
After reading about the nine elements of digital citizenship I think that number five the digital etiquette is most important to my class. As a kindergarten teacher I am the first person to introduce our students to online activities that are educational. My students might have been online at home but more than likely have not been talked to about digital etiquette. It is very important that our students learn about how and what is expected of them once they interact with the digital world. I feel it is important to talk about this early on rather than waiting and taking the chance for something bad to happen. At the age of 2 years old our children are starting to make a digital footprint and are now getting on and interacting with the digital world. So, I feel that it is necessary that as soon as the children come into schools we need to educate them on how to act and be active in the digital world.
Kearsley, K. (2005, February 23). Lawmaker wants to prevent cyberbullying. USA Today. Retrieved from http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/tech/news/techpolocy/2005-02-23-cyberbulling_x.hem.
Ribble, M. (2015). Digital citizenship in schools: Nine elements all students should know. (3rd ed.). Eugene, OR: International Society for Technology.
To hear more about my thoughts and find resources please visit my Digital Citizenship page
We, as teachers, want our students to be passionate, hard working, confident, life long learners, who are prepared for their futures beyond the classroom right? Well then we need to start making sure we are staying updated with all the new technology that is entering the workforce and get students working proficiently on them. To do this we must start introducing students early enough that they can truly understand the importance of technology, how it can truly help in this developing world we live in, and how it can help us with collaboration with others. So, where do we start in education you ask? Well, first we start with online learning environments. To get started we need to decide on which learning theory and instructional design models lend themselves to the development of online learning environments. I feel that Leo Vygotsky and Jerome Bruner have the most widely used theories and models. These two theories and Bruner’s model are what I would recommend if you wanted to create an online learning environment.
As a Russian psychologist Vygotsky introduced the Sociocultural Learning Theory. One of his quotes that I feel encompasses the idea of online learning environments is “through others we become ourselves”, which supports that learning is a social process that we need to be apart of to get our best work. Vygotsky believed that the learning process involves three key themes, which are culture, language, and the “zone of proximal development.” He stresses the importance of social interaction in the cognitive development of children. He also believed that social learning traditionally comes before development. The Zone of Proximal Development, which focuses on the idea that new knowledge is dependent on previous learning is another key idea of his theory.
As an American psychologist Jerome Bruner introduced the discovery learning. It is a method of inquiry-based instruction that encourages students to build on past experiences and knowledge, be imaginative, and be creative. It allows for students to discover facts and relationships for themselves. They become active learners who are involved in their learning. “The Discovery Learning Model,” created by Bruner integrates five principles: Problem Solving, Learner Management, Integrating and Connecting, Information Analysis and Interpretation, Failure and Feedback. These principles are what make an online learning environment successful. They make sure that the learners are the driving force behind their learning. They encourage the learners to have a growth mindset and to not see failure as a bad thing but continue to take risks because only then can we truly learn something new. Collaboration is also a huge part of these principles, which is something everyone needs to learn how to do cooperatively and effectively.
When creating my learning environment I used my already created UbD plan. I thought it was a great plan to begin my first learning environment since it would need to be done both online and in the classroom. Being a kindergarten teacher I knew for my students their first time being involved in an online learning environment it would have to be blended as to make sure their understanding is there. As I created my learning environment I made sure to put in discussions so my students could work collaboratively and get ideas and comments about their projects from their peers. I also added links for students to find more facts about their chosen animal that would help them learn more about their animal and its habitat.
We are living in a world where things are constantly changing. Most importantly technology is always changing and being updated. Technology plays a key part in our everyday lives and we, as teachers need to take advantage of that and use technology to help us teach our children through online learning environments. We need to take control of our teaching once again and make it fun. We cannot just teach to the standards by lecturing and standing in front of our students. We need to get them involved in their learning by making them accountable for their learning, making them own their learning, and allowing them to have a voice. We can do this by using technology to allow our students to learn on their own and discover new things that they relate to.
Overall in this class I have learned that the key to a successful online learning environment is collaboration and the willingness to fail knowing that you are trying something new and you may need to make changes. Nothing is perfect the first time and we as creators of our online courses need to be willing to listen to our students for feedback about our courses and then make the necessary changes that could help our course better serve our students. I will apply this to my teaching by being willing to try new things, like implementing an online learning course in my kindergarten class. I know that I may have to make changes based on my students’ ability to navigate and use the program efficiently but I believe in the end the students will enjoy it and I will be astonished as to how much they can actually do by themselves, I hope. I will also make sure I am listening to my students when they comment about things they like and don’t like about the course and make the necessary changes. I want my students to learn how to use technology for learning and not just for gaming or video watching.
I really enjoyed using and discovering Schoology. I feel this is` a great resource for teaching online especially for districts where they cannot afford to spend money. I really would like to take time and try to create most of my units for kinder online so when my district supports blended learning I will not have to start from scratch. I think schoology is very user friendly and with practice I believe the students will be able to use it with ease and complete assignments without help. I will have to try to work on getting more devices into the classrooms though, if I would like to get the other teachers on board with teaching blended learning.
For my blended learning course my students will be creating their own project but they will be working collaboratively discussing their thoughts, sharing their ideas, and asking for input. We will have a class discussion daily on things they have learned. I think the biggest problem I may run into will be finding the materials the students want to create their diorama with. I want them to have fun and explore all the possibilities they have with recycled items or items found in the classroom. When they have completed their diorama they will be presenting it in front of the class and that will be graded based on what all their diorama entails and also their final assessment test covering the whole unit.
My class will be blended and not only online. I will have to teach my kinders how to navigate around Schoology , however I will be teaching this unit towards the end of their school year, so hopefully with the prior use of tech throughout the year, they will be able to take this lesson on without too many problems. Only time will tell but I believe they are capable to be able to do this course with maybe some guidance if need be. I plan on teaching my kinders how to navigate around Schoology by spending a little time each day going over the process on how to sign in and then what to do once you are in the course and how to make the most of their learning online from what I have provided them. All assessments will be given in class and not online. I feel it is better and most of the time more accurate for kinders if it is done by them personally and not completed online. I find in my area most of my students can not navigate a computer with a mouse accordingly and most of my students are ELL students who are still learning English (written and spoken). So, if necessary my students are able to have the test given to them in Spanish or their spoken language.
Lecture in the digital age I feel is very beneficial in some aspects. In blended learning I feel it helps those students who need a little more time and alone time to listen to a lecture. It allows them to pause and take breaks, it also allows students who are absent to still get the exact information that was given in their absence or absences. However I think some things still need to be in lecture because that is what creates a bond between teacher and student. I feel having a bond and connection to each other is important in understanding each other. It also allows to the students to feel/hear the passion a teacher has for her subject area, which in turn can get a student excited about learning in his or her class. I don't feel lectures need to be long, they just need to get the teaching point across and then let students go on their own to figure out the rest through observation, trial and error, and discussion.
I use the Constructivist Approach when I am teaching. I have always been a student who needs to be apart of my learning to understand and remember what is being taught. I truly believe every child can learn. It just takes guidance to help them find their learning style. Everyone is born curious and is eager to learn when given the right opportunities. So, as a teacher I try to make sure I always give my students the opportunity to be engaged and be apart of their learning. When thinking about what theory fits more closely with the structure of an online learning environment I would think that Constructivism does because it allows students to be apart of their learning, be creative, and take owership of their work.
I am really excited to try the Schoology for this course. I have never used an LMS before and I am excited to learn more about them and to see the benefits of having one.
I have been taught a lot about CSLE (Creating Significant Learning Environments). CSLE is all about how the students learn and how I as a teacher can help them learn. For true authentic learning to take place there has to be coexistence between the context in which learning happens, the boundaries that define it, the students, and the teacher. While coexisting they need to shape each other in a mutually reinforcing way. When we use the learning-based approach the culture emerges from the environment, it focuses on learning through engagement within the world, and the point of learning is embraced by what we don’t know and then continue asking questions in order to learn more and more, both incrementally and exponentially. This has completely made me step back from my own teaching and really take a look at how effective my kindergarten room truly is. We as teachers need to make sure that when teaching our students we are allowing them to truly learn and connect their learning to their world and not just collect information that they cannot make true sense of.
In the past five weeks I had an end goal that was to create my own significant learning environment. I was first asked to begin by looking at a book called A New Culture of Learning (2011). It explains how to cultivate the imagination in a world of constant change. After reading this book I realized I wanted to make sure to create a peer-to-peer learning environment. I want my students to learn through their interaction and participation with one another. No one in this environment is assigned to the traditional role of teacher or student. After deciding that I wanted my learning environment to be based on peer-to peer learning I then needed to construct my learning philosophy. While constructing my learning philosophy I found out that I mostly relate to the Constructivist Approach to learning and the research of Jean Piaget, Jerome Bruner, and Loris Malaguzzi. Their belief that children are curious individuals that are capable of creating their own learning is what I believe. Once I completed the first to tasks I knew I wanted to change how I have been teaching and implement what I found out into my classroom and start making holistic learning possible in my room. In order to do this I then needed to create something that would lay it all out for me and that was by using Fink’s 3 column table. This table was created to align my outcomes, activities, and assessments and allow me to create a Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) so I could see the bigger picture when looking at my units or lessons. I then looked at the book Understanding by Design (2005) and used the UbD template to help me develop my plan a little more cohesively and allow to create the evidence needed to complete my goals/outcomes. Finally my last task was to read the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success and create my growth mindset plan. Getting my students to have a growth mindset is the first step in creating holistic learning. The students need to know that they can do anything they set their mind on and by having grit they will always succeed even though the many failures.
My innovation plan matches my desire to create a significant learning environment. When students create, explore, and investigate through their steam project they will take ownership of their learning and making connections through questioning and reflections. They will realize there will be times that they may fail but that is going to happen and it is okay. They will learn that through dedication and grit they will succeed it just may take some time and it will not happen right away. Through my CSLE I hope to teach my students how to be lifelong learners and continue through life with having a growth mindset and not a fixed mindset.
Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Random House.
Fink, L. D., PhD. (n.d.). A self-directed guide to designing courses for significant learning. Retrieved from https://luonline.blackboard.com/bbcswebdav/pid-3042999-dt-content-rid-30108308_1/courses/13583.201810/Self-Directed%20Guide%20to%20Course%20Design%20-%20Fink%20Summary.pdf
Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.
Wiggins, G. P., & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by design. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
In the book Crucial conversations: Tools For Talking When Stakes Are High written by Joseph Grenny, Kerry Patterson, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler it says to follow these seven dialogue principles when coaching for crucial conversation:
1. Start with the Heart
When I think about how passionate I am on certain subjects I wonder if I could handle and stay focused like Greta did in the book. I wonder if I myself would have been able to not criticize and belittle the guy after his comment. I think the quote by Ambrose Bierce, "Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you will ever regret," completely explains how most crucial conversations go when you are not ready to have a crucial conversation. I think sometimes when you have so much heart in something it almost blinds you. When that happens its important to step back and make sure you are doing what is best and remember outside opinions at that point are good because you can't always see or know everything else going on. So, I hope when I get put into a situation like Greta, I remember how to stay focused on what I really want.
I will continue to work on these crucial conversation dialogue skills so when the stakes are high, the opinions are different, and the emotions are strong I will be able to lead the conversation.
Below are two short videos that will explain Crucial Conversations.
Callibrain. (2015). Video review for crucial conversations by kerry patterson. [YouTube Video]. Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFaXx3pgaxM&feature=youtu.be
Patterson. K., Grenny, J., McMillan, R. & Switzler, A. (2012). Crucial conversations: Tools for talking when stakes are high. United State of America.
Vital Smarts India. (2012). Crucial conversations explained in two minutes. [YouTube Video]. Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixEI4_2Xivw&feature=youtu.be
My name is Andrea Miller. I am a Kindergarten teacher in the greater Grand Rapids area. I love getting feedback and learning new ways to teach material to my students. I love getting them excited about learning and gaining a love for school.